Object-based, experiential learning/evidence-based inquiry engages young minds and models how research is conducted. It is clear that this kind of authentic experience stays with students long afterward. Our research investigated 74 fifth-grade public school students’ conceptions of evidence, of the provisional nature of archaeological and historical interpretations, and of the purposes for using archaeology to study the past. Three and four years later, we conducted follow-up interviews with 29 of the students to investigate what they remembered about their archaeological experience, including classroom instruction, excavation/labwork, and concepts related to archaeological processes and historical information. Our study shows that in-depth archaeological study has considerable sticking power. It also provides important insights into how students think about archaeology, history, and the past, and how they relate “things” to the past and to past cultures. In particular, it shows that the materiality of archaeology offers students opportunities to create multiple, evidence-based interpretations when they are taught to understand culture in material ways. Our study also offers concrete suggestions for anyone considering using objects to teach about the past: use an inquiry-based approach, take students’ prior knowledge into account, use metaphors carefully with younger children, and make the human-object connection explicit for all.